In every race I have ever done, there comes a point where I get this big surprise when I realize how uncomfortable racing my bike can be. Having to push hard and ride at the pace set by the pack can be painful. The funny thing is that after over 25 years of racing, I am still surprised when it starts to hurt. Mentally I think that my brain keeps me from quitting the sport by hiding the painful stuff so that I will go back out next week and have another go.
Article published in 2017.
I wanted to write an article about Criterium racing, and give some tips, but looking around, most of the tips like “get in a good warmup,” “line up early,” “stay up front,” etc. have pretty much been covered. So I thought about the advice I give my riders beyond the basics.
I was out riding around my usual farm roads a few weeks back. My hands and face were freezing as usual and I was temped to slow down to reduce the wind chill a bit. But slowing down would mean dropping my power since the roads are pretty flat and fast. So I was thinking how can I maintain my power and intensity while bringing the speed down to a point where the wind was not as big of a factor in making me cold. One way is to find roads that point up. Speed goes down and power goes up, but eventually I would have to come back down.